Dams on Avon River

Excellent Day Sunday.  On the way back from Annapolis Royal we stopped to walk one of the trails, Moses Mountain, described by Michael Haynes in his book Hiking Trails of Nova Scotia.  The trail is really a primitive road used by NS Power to access two dams and power and pump houses. Haynes describes a walk/hike here as a circuit, but notes there is no bridge over the Avon at the west end of the circuit.  During the spring, in particular-this spring, on this Sunday, the water was too high to cross without hip waders. In warmer weather bare feet would be fine too.  We chose to follow the trail in the other direction, heading east. The walking is easy and in short order we began to climb.  The road lead to two dams*.

Avon River, MacDonald Dam

The MacDonald Dam is the smaller of the two – not too far from the power house.

The larger dam (below), Falls Lake Dam, is fairly dramatic hidden away in the woods as it is.  The falls before the dam was built must have been impressive.  It is still possible to get a sense of these falls and I hope that when we return and walk the other side of the river we will have a better view.

Avon River, Falls Lake Dam in Nova Scotia.

Our entire walk, about 7 km, took approximately 2 hours.  Directions to the start, as outlined in the book are clear, but since we came from the opposite direction, we did use a Nova Scotia map as well.  Location posted on my NS google map.

Moses Mountain is closer to the west end of the trail. Two young men we met at the river were hoping to cross and climb Moses Mountain.  They decided to follow the river’s edge looking for a place to cross.  Since we never crossed the river, we had no opportunity to climb Moses Mountain.  Another reason to return and do the alternate side of the trail.

It is important to note that Haynes’ book says that the NS Power bridge at the Falls Lake Dam is open.  When we were there (April 13, 2014) it was not open, so no circle walk would have been possible.

*Nova Scotia is dotted with small dams built through the 1930s and 1940s as part of a power generating system and these dams continue to function today.


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